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Accidental Rugmaker

A journey with wool

By: Kira Mead

Great Sandy, 35" x 31". Standing wool strips from woolen blankets. Designed and constructed by Kira Mead, Albany, Western Australia, 2014.

I have always had a love affair with bright colors and soft fabrics—from the soft fluffy blankie brushing against my skin as a child, to my beloved purple mohair snuggle rug as a teenager, and now as an adult creating my standing wool art by sculpting with vibrantly colored 100% wool blankets.

I love a trawl through the charity op shops looking for wool blankets. If I was really lucky I would find a high quality and brightly colored “Albany Woollen Mill” blanket from my home town. I collected those wool blankets and knew that someday I would do something wonderful with them.

Quite by accident I came across the art form called standing rugs and quillies. I was looking for ideas on the Internet for upcycling my 100% wool blankets when I happened across images of “Accidental Carpets.” These carpets were originally created to brighten a large concrete floor in a building for epileptic children. Not necessarily designed as a functional piece for the floor, they were beautiful to look at and brightened the space.

It was mind blowing. My brain was in overdrive with different ideas; I wanted to make one—or ten!

This article is from the June/July/August 2015 issue. For more information on our issues, check out our issues page.


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